In a powerful indication of just how impactful the World Cup can be, new data show that the number of boys named "Diego" skyrocketed during Argentina's run to the 1986 World Cup crown.
The Albiceleste were, of course, led by the eccentric superstar Diego Maradona during the tournament in Mexico. Maradona willed his side to the trophy with a selection of performances that drove his soccer-mad country into hysterics. Perhaps the two most memorable -- the "Hand of God" goal and the "Goal of the Century" -- helped push Argentina past England and into the semifinals.
Adrien Friggeri of Facebook dove into some data and discovered that during the World Cup the number of baby boys born in Argentina named "Diego" rose tremendously.
In the 18 months before and after the World Cup, the odds of a boy being named "Diego" were around 1 or 1.5 percent. During the week of the final, about 5.5 percent of boys born were named "Diego."
Check out the crazy jump in this graph (via Facebook):
Pretty exceptional data here. It attests not only to the passion with which people in Argentina watch soccer but also to the weight of the World Cup. Perhaps studies in 28 years will show that this year's tournament prompted a new generation of parents in Argentina to name their boys "Lionel."
In case you don't remember Maradona's two goals against England, you can relive them here:
(H/T to For The Win)